How to Get Quick Personal Loans — That Are Actually Legit

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Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print understand what you are buying, and consult a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided or commissioned by any financial institution. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the financial institution.

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An emergency comes up and you need money fast. But the amount you need exceeds your savings — by a bit. Is it possible to get quick personal loans to make up the difference?
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There are lenders that offer fast turn around for when you need a loan now. But others will try to take advantage of your desperate situation to rope you into a loan with sky-high fees, interest rates, and costs.

To protect yourself and your finances, you’ll need to know how to safely get quick personal loans.

5 ways to borrow when you need money fast

If you’re in desperate need of cash, you might not feel like you can afford to take your time finding a loan and comparing costs. But you still need to think through the decision and ensure you aren’t signing on for a predatory loan.

Luckily, there are some types of lenders and quick personal loans that are better bets than others. Which you choose will affect how fast you can get cash — and the costs you’ll face.

1. Start with LendingTree

There are dozens of lenders that participate in LendingTree’s personal loan shopping tool. (LendingTree is the parent company of Student Loan Hero.) When you go through LendingTree’s online form experience, there will be a soft pull performed, which means there will be no impact on your credit score. From there, you will be able to compare multiple personal loan offers from up to 5 lenders. It is important to shop around when looking for a personal loan so that you can make sure you are getting the best rate, and LendingTree makes this process easy and quick. LendingTree also has several lenders in their network that can provide turnaround times of less than 24 hours for some applicants.

Visit LendingTree

2. Look for personal lenders with fast approval

A personal lender will be your best bet to get the best interest rates and fees. However, lenders will usually take one to three days to process an application, approve you for a loan, and fund the money. You’ll also need good credit to qualify for quick personal loans.

If you’re interested in going this route, Avant and Pave are both lenders that offer personal loans with a faster turnaround. RocketLoans also promises funds in one to three business days. Before applying, be ready to like identification and proof of income so you can quickly complete and submit an application.

These personal loan rates will depend on your credit but typically run between 10 and 15 percent. Most lenders that offer quick personal loans will also charge an origination fee — usually 1 to 5 percent of your loan balance.

3. Ask for a loan from a friend or family member

If you have a support network, you can ask those close to you for help. Ask a family member or friend who you think can spare the cash for a quick loan.

Take the time to discuss and agree on terms, like how often you’ll give them payments on the loan and whether you’ll be expected to pay interest. It’s often worth the effort to sign a promissory note for the loan, as well. Going into the situation with clear expectations will help protect finances — and the relationship.

Another option when you need money fast would be to get it from a friend or family member and then apply for a personal loan. You get the cash you need, then when the loan is funded, you can repay the friend or family member right away.

4. Get a cash advance or use a credit card

If you have a credit card, you can also tap into this line of credit. There are two ways to do so. The first is by putting an emergency expense on your credit card.

The other is to take out a cash advance. Getting a cash advance is pretty simple: take your credit card to an ATM or bank and they will charge your credit card and give you cash in return. Some credit card issuers like Discover even allow you to make an online transfer to your checking account.

Keep in mind you’ll usually face a credit card cash advance fee, between 3 and 5 percent. On top of that, you’ll also face your credit card interest that averages 24% APR, according to CreditCards.com. The balance will accrue interest every month until you can repay that balance.

Because of these high costs, you might consider getting money fast through a cash advance. Then you can consolidate the credit card debt with a personal loan to get a lower interest rate.

5. Try a secured loan

Some people will need quick personal loans but won’t be able to qualify for most personal loans or even a credit card. If this is the case, a secured personal loan could be the best option.

A secured loan is guaranteed by something you own that you use as collateral. Some examples include a car equity loan, a 401k loan, or a pawn shop loan.

Applying for a secured personal loan might not be the fastest way to get cash. Secured loans also require that you own a valuable to use as collateral, and you run the risk of losing that asset if you default on the loan. But if you have bad credit, it will be easier to qualify for these types of quick personal loans.

3 quick personal loans you should avoid

The above ways to borrow are your safest bets to get money when you need a loan now. But other options can make it more likely that you’ll get scammed into a high-cost loan.

Here are some types of predatory loans that are best avoided.

1. Payday loans

With a payday loan, you hand over a check for the total amount of the loan. Then the payday lender gives you cash — minus their fees — equal to the check, according to the FTC. Then, on the day your paycheck comes in, they cash the check from you.

A payday loan seems like a great deal. Often these types of loans are designed that way, with high-pressure marketing tactics designed to get you to sign. But with short terms and sky-high fees and interest rates, payday loans veer too close to predatory for comfort.

2. Advance-fee loans

Advance-fee loans or no-credit-check loans are another lending product the FTC warns against. However, these lenders are often predatory and scammy.

Advance-fee loans often boast that they won’t check your credit. They also tend to have hidden fees or ask for money upfront. These are red flags that a lender is not working with your best interest in mind and you should choose to walk away.

3. Car title loan

The FTC also advises consumers to be very careful with car title loans. These are loans similar to a payday loan but, instead of being secured by a check, the collateral is your car’s title.

These are short-term loans that often have expensive APRs of 100 percent or higher. You’ll also run the risk of losing your car, which can be vital to your job and continued employment.

When you need money fast and you’re feeling desperate, that’s when you’re most financially vulnerable. Don’t fall for predatory lending tactics and scams. See if you can ask for more time to pay a bill or another expense.

Take some time to calm yourself, get informed on quick personal loans, and make the best decision possible.

Get multiple custom offers at once

Forget filling out tons of forms. Finding your best personal loan rate is now easier than ever.

Disclaimer: Student Loan Hero is a subsidiary of LendingTree.
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Lendingtree allows you to compare rates from multiple lenders by filling out one easy form. Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print understand what you are buying, and consult a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print understand what you are buying, and consult a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

RATES (APR)loan amount
5.74% – 16.99%1 $5,000 to $100,000
7.54% – 35.99% $1,000 to $50,000
7.99% – 35.89%* $1,000 to $50,000
56.00% – 199.00%2 $500 to $4,000
5.99% – 24.99%3 $5,000 to $35,000
5.99% – 29.99%4 $7,500 to $40,000
compare rates on Lendingtree now
Disclaimer: Student Loan Hero is a subsidiary of LendingTree
1 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for SoFi.

SoFi Disclosures

  1. Fixed rates from 5.990% APR to 16.990% APR (with AutoPay). Variable rates from 5.74% APR to 14.70% APR (with AutoPay). SoFi rate ranges are current as of March 18, 2019 and are subject to change without notice. Not all rates and amounts available in all states. See Personal Loan eligibility details. Not all applicants qualify for the lowest rate. If approved for a loan, to qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. Your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including evaluation of your credit worthiness, years of professional experience, income and other factors. See APR examples and terms. Interest rates on variable rate loans are capped at 14.95%. Lowest variable rate of 5.72% APR assumes current 1-month LIBOR rate of 2.49% plus 4.28% margin minus 0.25% AutoPay discount. For the SoFi variable rate loan, the 1-month LIBOR index will adjust monthly and the loan payment will be re-amortized and may change monthly. APRs for variable rate loans may increase after origination if the LIBOR index increases. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account.
  2. To check the rates and terms you qualify for, SoFi conducts a soft credit pull that will not affect your credit score. However, if you choose a product and continue your application, we will request your full credit report from one or more consumer reporting agencies, which is considered a hard credit pull.
    See Consumer Licenses.
  3. Minimum Credit Score: Not all applicants who meet SoFi’s minimum credit score requirements are approved for a personal loan. In addition to meeting SoFi’s minimum eligibility criteria, applicants must also meet other credit and underwriting requirements to qualify.
  4. SoFi Personal Loans are not available to residents of MS. Maximum interest rate on loans for residents of AK and WY is 9.99% APR, for residents of IL with loans over $40,000 is 8.99% APR, for residents of TX is 9.99% APR on terms greater than 5 years, for residents of CO, CT, HI, VA, SC is 11.99% APR, and for residents of ME is 12.24% APR. Personal loans not available to residents of MI who already have a student loan with SoFi. Personal Loans minimum loan amount is $5,000. Residents of AZ, MA, and NH have a minimum loan amount of $10,001. Residents of KY have a minimum loan amount of $15,001. Residents of PA have a minimum loan amount of $25,001. Variable rates not available to residents of AK, TX, VA, WY, or for residents of IL for loans greater than $40,000.
  5. Terms and Conditions Apply: SOFI RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet SoFi’s underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. To qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. If approved, your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including term of loan, a responsible financial history, years of experience, income and other factors. Rates and Terms are subject to change at anytime without notice and are subject to state restrictions. SoFi refinance loans are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that the federal loan program offers such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment or PAYE. Licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Financing Law License No. 6054612. SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Lending Corp., NMLS # 1121636. (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org)
2 Important Disclosures for Opploans.

Opploans Disclosures

Direct Deposit required for payroll.

Opploans currently operates in these states:

  1. To qualify, a borrower must (i) be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident; (ii) reside in a state where OppLoans operates; (iii) have direct deposit; (iv) meet income requirements; (v) be 18 years of age (19 in Alabama); and, (vi) meet verification standards.
  2. This information is current as of October 10, 2017 and is subject to change. Opportunity Financial, LLC lends or arranges loans in the following states: Alabama, California, Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Maryland, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin. We do not lend or arrange loans in all states. Opportunity Financial offers line of credit products in: Kansas, Tennessee and Virginia. Please note: This is an expensive form of credit. This service is not intended to provide a solution for longer-term credit or other financial needs. Loans made or arranged by Opportunity Financial are designed to help you meet your short-term borrowing needs. Loan amounts may vary and are dependent upon qualification criteria and state law. Refer to Loan Cost & Terms at www.opploans.com for additional details. Complete disclosures of APR, fees and payment terms are provided within the transaction documents, such as the Loan Agreement. First-time Opportunity Financial customers typically qualify for an installment loan of $1,000 to $5,000 with an APR from 59% to 199%. For example, a $1,000 loan made or arranged by Opportunity Financial with 12 bi-weekly payments of $130 has a 199% APR. After the 12th successful payment, the loan would be paid in full.
  3. Applications processed and approved before 7:30 p.m. ET Monday-Friday are typically funded the next business day. In some cases, we may not be able to verify your application information and may ask you to provide certain documents. Some customers applying for a loan may be required to submit additional documentation due to state law and qualification criteria.
  4. Lower APRs and longer terms when compared to a typical payday lending product. According to the Consumer Federation of America, a non-profit consumer advocacy group, payday loans range in size from $100 to $1,000, depending on state legal maximums and carry an average APR of 400% and an average loan term of two weeks. The maximum APR for a loan offered by OppLoans is 199% and loan sizes range from $1,000-$5,000 with a typical term of six months dependent on the state law.
  5. As of October 17, 2017. Ratings on third-party websites may periodically change; please check the third-party websites for up-to-date reviews and ratings. Google+ Rating: 4.8 out of 5 based on 1,824 reviews. Facebook Rating: 4.7 out of 5 based on 270 reviews.
3 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for Payoff.

Payoff Disclosures

  1. All loans are subject to credit review and approval. Your actual rate depends upon credit score, loan amount, loan term, credit usage and history. Currently loans are not offered in: MA, MS, NE, NV, OH, and WV.
4 Important Disclosures for FreedomPlus.

FreedomPlus Disclosures

  1. All loans available through FreedomPlus.com are made by Cross River Bank, a New Jersey State Chartered Commercial Bank, Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender. All loan and rate terms are subject to eligibility restrictions, application review, credit score, loan amount, loan term, lender approval, and credit usage and history. Eligibility for a loan is not guaranteed. Loans are not available to residents of all states – please call a FreedomPlus representative for further details. The following limitations, in addition to others, shall apply: FreedomPlus does not arrange loans in: (i) Arizona under $10,500; (ii) Massachusetts under $6,500, (iii) Ohio under $5,500, and (iv) Georgia under $3,500. Repayment periods range from 24 to 60 months. The range of APRs on loans made available through FreedomPlus is 5.99% to a maximum of 29.99%. APR. The APR calculation includes all applicable fees, including the loan origination fee. For Example, a four year $20,000 loan with an interest rate of 15.49% and corresponding APR of 18.34% would have an estimated monthly payment of $561.60 and a total cost payable of $7,948.13. To qualify for a 5.99% APR loan, a borrower will need excellent credit on a loan for an amount less than $12,000.00, and with a term equal to 24 months. Adding a co-borrower with sufficient income; using at least eighty-five percent (85%) of the loan proceeds to directly pay off qualifying existing debt; or showing proof of sufficient retirement savings, could help you also qualify for the lowest rate available.
* Important Disclosures for Upgrade Bank.

Upgrade Bank Disclosures

* Your loan terms are not guaranteed and are subject to our verification and review process. You may be asked to provide additional documents to enable us to verify your income and your identity. This rate includes an Autopay APR reduction of 0.5%. By enrolling in Autopay your payments will be automatically deducted from you bank account. Selecting Autopay is optional. Annual Percentage Rate is inclusive of a loan origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may increase the cost of your fixed rate loan. All loans made by WebBank, member FDIC. Please refer to Upgrade’s Terms of Use and Borrower Agreement for all terms, conditions and requirements.

** Accept your loan offer and your funds will be sent to your bank via ACH within one (1) business day of clearing necessary verifications. Availability of the funds is dependent on how quickly your bank processes this transaction. From the time of approval, funds should be available within four (4) business days.